Albania and the Second World War

Albania, a country in south-eastern Europe, was part of the Ottoman empire from the 15th century until the Balkan Wars. In 1913 Turkey lost control of the country and it remained in political turmoil throughout the First World War.

Following a rebellion led by Ahmed Bey Zogu Albania became a republic. However, three years later he took the title King Zog. He remained in power until Albania was invaded by the Italian Army in 1939. Benito Mussolini forced Zog into exile and and the king of Italy assumed the Albanian crown.

In October 1940 Mussolini used Albania as a base to launch an attack on Greece. Attempts by the Italian Army to invade Greece ended in failure, but with the help of the German Army Mussolini was able to keep control of Albania.

The resistance to the Italian occupation mainly came from the communist forces led by Enver Hoxha. At the end of the Second World War Hoxha was able to establish a republican government in Albania.